New draft ISP pirate code released

New Piracy Codes in Australia

The Communications Alliance released a draft of industry codes that will see rights holders and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) working together to prevent online piracy in Australia.

The alliance includes representatives from Optus, iiNet, Telstra and other Australian ISPs and the code is the first step towards blanket procedures expected to be implemented by the 1st of September, 2015.

The code outlines a three strike method for Internet Protocol addresses (IP) that are regularly identified as using the internet to illegally download copyrighted content.

Rights holders will be responsible for tracking down the ISPs that are accessing copyrighted material and having each infringement audited by an independent body, before passing on those IP numbers to ISPs.

From here the ISPs have agreed to send warning notices to account holders that contain guidelines for accessing legitimate alternatives.

Cracking the code

To prevent households from receiving multiple notices for the same offence, each account holder can only receive one warning notice within a 14 day period.

All account details will be kept confidential for the first two warnings in a twelve month period. On the third notice however, rights holders will be able to file a court appeal for the disclosure of the account holder's identity and may pursue copyright claims from there.

Any account holder who believes they have been falsely accused of a copyright infringement will have to pay $25 to lodge a challenge notice with their ISP.

There are still some costs to be fleshed out and the frequency and volume of copyright infringement reports are also still being discussed. The draft code is open for public input and comments made before the 23rd of March will be taken into account for the final version.

With both Presto and Stan's subscription video services opening earlier this year and the arrival of Netflix next month, the legal market for entertainment in Australia is taking some big steps forward.

These new services have a range of content at reasonable prices and should soften the transition for the many Australians who use pirated entertainment.

Joel Burgess
Staff Writer

Joel has been the in-house benchmark monkey for the Australian TechRadar team and Australia’s two biggest tech magazines (APC and TechLife) since 2014.